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CDC: Measles Cases on the Rise in U.S.

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Measles cases are on the rise.

The CDC reports there have been 159 cases so far this yearincluding an ongoing outbreak linked to a megachurch in Texas where 20 membershave come down with the highly contagious virus.

"We have been averaging about 60 cases a year and soseeing 159 cases is concerning," says Dr. Anne Schuchat.

Measles can be serious and can lead to pneumonia or evendeath, although in industrialized countries most just get a rash and a fever.

Because of high vaccination rates, measles are now rare inthe United States.

Almost all of the cases this year were linked to peopletraveling from overseas who spread it here.

The largest outbreak this year was here in Brooklyn, New Yorkwith 58 cases.

None of the patients were vaccinated because of religious andphilosophical beliefs or because some were too young to get the shots.

Some communities still refuse immunizations because of adiscredited report that linked the vaccine to autism.

Health officials say everyone should be vaccinated.

"Making sure your children are vaccinated and up to dateis important to protect them and those around them," says Dr. Schuchat

Most Americans have gotten the message; the CDC says99 percent of children get vaccinated.